Cultural Experience | All Destinations

Top Travel Destinations in 2015 for Student Travelers.

Here’s a round up of College Tourists most sought-after student destinations of 2015.


Image and text credit: Julia Wiesmann

Zanzibar, Tanzania

There are fewer African names more attractive and magical than Zanzibar. With the beautiful turquoise sea, palm-packed beaches, timeless fishing villages and the smell of exotic spices, Zanzibar is a magical and unique travel destination for students across the globe. Zanzibar consists of two large islands, plus several smaller ones. Today the islands of Zanzibar are home to a million Swahili people. Though the dominant religion is Islam, over the centuries Zanzibar has known many cultures. Zanzibar was one of the world`s great trading hubs, making it a melting pot of African, Indian and Arabic influences.


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Text credit: Hannah Heine | Text and image credit: Julia Wiesmann

Bangkok, Thailand

Every year, Thailand’s capital city attracts millions of travelers from around the world. From golden shimmering temples and gigantic skyscrapers to beautiful parks and colorful floating markets, Bangkok is a fascinating city full of contrasts. Bangkok charms its visitors with unexpected pleasantries as well as a day-to-day hustle & bustle. Full of history, this city is a must-see when in the Southeast Asian area with great shopping, temples, waterways, and food! Though the city has had spurts of rapid growth followed by instability and crisis, today the city is one of the most sought after travel destinations in the center of Thailand.


Image and text credit: Elizabeth Tzagournis

London, England

London, as a major metropolis city, welcomes visitors from all backgrounds, cultures and birthplaces. As a city that is well connected to many other European countries, visitors will be sure to encounter a diversity of people, cultures and activities. Virtually every street, monument and pub in the city of London has some historical significance and studying in a city with history at its every corner is a completely unique experience. Students exposed to this type of lifestyle will enjoy a more unique and expansive experience. In fact, London was ranked as the third best student cities in the 2015 QS Best Student Cities test.



Text credit: Rebecca Hennelly | Image credit: Shannon Kelly

Cape Town, South Africa

Cape Town is a place where the beer is almost cheaper than water and hiking is worth the sweat. This destination is a wish come true for students who dream of Safaris, love the ocean and want to make a difference. In order to ground themselves in the reality of Cape Town, students explore the townships and seek out opportunities for public service. The reality of townships, including their lack of clean water, electricity, proper housing, and the social issues they create, is something South Africans and tourists alike are highly educated on. Cape Town isn’t a place to just pass through… it’s a place to listen, learn, and make a difference.


Image and text credit: Sarah Allen

Morocco, Africa

From colorful spices, to henna tattoos, to one of the largest movie studios in the world, Morocco has something for everyone. One of Morocco’s most interesting century-old cities is Ouarzazate— home to the Atlas Corporation Studios. Ouarzazate’s gorgeous atmosphere has served as the backdrop for scenes in tons of movies including Gladiator, Body of Lies, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, and even What a Girl Wants! (Remember that part when Henry and Libby fell in love?) The city is also one of the filming locations for everyone’s favorite medieval fantasy, Game of Thrones.


Image and text credit: Ben Rissler

Image and text credit: Ben Rissler

Reykjavik, Iceland

The capital city of the “Land of Fire and Ice” boasts a unique beauty unlike any other place in the world. With a skyline dominated by the Hallgrímskirkja, a volcanic mountain range named Esjan, and the dark blue waters of the harbor, Reykjavik should not be missed by the adventurous traveler seeking to get to know one of the most picturesque nations in the world. During the winter months, catch a glimpse of the Aurora Borealis, commonly referred to as the Northern Lights. In contrast, experience the midnight sun during the summer while partying it up in one of the most underrated nightlife spots in the world.


Surfer’s Paradise, Australia 

There’s no better place to find yourself living in than Surfer’s Paradise, a small town in Gold Coast, Queensland. As the name suggests, this piece of Paradise provides the perfect backdrop for every student’s Australian adventures. Located in the center of Gold Coast, Surfer’s Paradise has shopping centers, an array of restaurants and bars to suit any budget and a beach worth spending the day on. With an abundance of resorts, hotels and hostels along the coast, as well as it’s breathtaking beaches and plethora of nightlife options, Surfer’s Paradise has it all.



Text credit: Rachel Jenkins | Image credit: Kelsey Dennison

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia 

Malaysia is an adventurous travel destination for any college tourist traveling abroad in the Eastern hemisphere. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia’s capital, is a fascinating city hosting a blend of different cultures and ethnic groups. The city is bustling with affordable dining, shopping and entertainment options for students. And what’s even better than Kuala Lumpur’s culture, delicious street eats, and the shopping is the price of travel. One USD equals about 4.31 Malaysian ringgit (MYR), so with conversation rates in your favor, you can easily live on about $20 USD a day while traveling to this country. No wonder it’s a hot travel destination for college tourists!



Image and text credit: Veronica White

The Hague, Netherlands

The Hague is a must-visit for every college tourist. Only a 50-minute train ride away from the centre of Amsterdam, The Hague (or as the Dutch call it, Den Haag) is home to the Dutch government, many exciting shops and restaurants, and the famous Vermeer painting The Girl with the Pearl Earring. Although The Hague may not have as many of the picturesque canals that Amsterdam boasts on their postcards, the atmosphere in The Hague is much more laid back as a result of fewer tourists. From bungee jumping from the Scheveningen Pier to seeing the city from a-top the The Hague Tower, The Hague is a beautiful place for students to experience.


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Image credit: Kelsey Dennison | Text credit: Bethany Dickey

Shanghai, China

Shanghai is known as the Paris of the East, and it’s not hard to see why. Whether it be tofu from a street stall or the latest Prada bag, anything you could dream of wanting, you can find in Shanghai. Shanghai is a cosmopolitan city, and the touristic area of East Nanjing Road is especially vibrant and safe at night. The entire city is well-lit. The lights in some areas look just like Times Square, while in others they look like a festive display somewhere in France. Shanghai is unquestionably a favorite tourist destination– that is, college tourist destination.



Image and text credit: Kate Hiller

Windhoek, Namibia

Windhoek (also known as Windhuk) is the capital city of Namibia, which is situated just north of South Africa on the west side of the continent. The country has a population of about 2.3 million people, a bit more than 300 thousand of whom live in the capital city. Windhoek is a vibrant, European-esque city that mixes local culture with a very modern vibe. The shopping is unique, with multiple malls within about a 5-block radius, as well as dozens of artisans selling their goods on the streets. Women from the Himba tribe (northern Namibia) dress up in traditional costume to sell their bracelets and other goods to the tourists traveling through the city.


Image and text credit: Jenna Rice

Amalfi Coast, Italy

The Amalfi coast is one of the most photogenic places in the world, making it an incredible destination for tourists. This beautiful coastal city is known for it’s delicious seafood, it’s pristine Mediterranean waters, and it’s proximity to the Pompeii ruins. One of the best things to do is to splurge on some custom sandals. Capri is famous for its handmade sandal shops. Even Jackie Kennedy was a fan! Each shop offers hundreds of different styles and color combinations to choose from. The cobblers make the sandals right in front of you, if you’re willing to wait. If not, they’ll deliver your one-of-a-kind shoes directly to your hostel free of charge.

Brooke Stafford

Pennsylvania State University | 11 stories

Brooke is currently a senior studying public relations and psychology at Penn State University. She is a curious mind, a social media enthusiast and well-traveled daydreamer. When she isn't fantasizing about her next big adventure, she is drinking chai, napping, or scrolling through

2 responses to “Top Travel Destinations in 2015 for Student Travelers.”

  1. Tara Simone says:

    I haven’t heard about Zanzibar, but it seems like it’s rich with history. I’ll have to find out more about it. Other than that, Bangkok, London, and Morroco are on my list!

  2. these all look beautiful! x, kenz

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